In the last year, we’ve all learned a lot about ourselves and a lot about the people in our immediate vicinities—because we can’t get away from them.
Those of us who are taking COVID-19 seriously are pretty much just seeing the people we live with and occasionally making eye contact with strangers at the grocery store.
Even people who aren't taking COVID seriously are probably having their lives rearranged, as people lose jobs or work from home or are adapting to their kids learning over Zoom.
Perspectives are shifting.
A Twitter user named @girlziplocked asked their followers to share their stories about how "this pandemic proved to you the disutility of heterosexual marriage" speaking primarily to women.
She invited them to DM their stories so "I can show my female friends they're not alone in this."
Before the messages started rolling in, they shared some more of their thoughts on why the pandemic is making many women realize heterosexual marriage can be a burden and not a gift in times of stress.
In their opinion, women are asked to not only do a disproportionate amount of work around the house, but it also becomes their responsibility to make the emotional component "work." When a marriage is bad, that becomes their responsibility, too.
You can't talk your husband out of misogyny. If he takes a gendered arrangement for granted and has no analysis of how gender inequality actually works in heterosexual relationships, he's not going to meet you halfway. He has no idea where that is.— girl, divorce him (@girlziplocked) February 6, 2021
They explained that this gendered split in heterosexual relationships is something "that men don’t even comprehend because it’s so taken for granted that it’s not their role."
Followers began pouring out their stories in the DMs which @girlziplocked screenshot and shared with permission. Lots of women seem to be realizing that they do not want to spend their lives with the men who have let them down in this pandemic, refusing to meet them halfway with childcare, housekeeping, and even the breadwinning they're supposed to be so good at.
But a lot of women in marriages realize they may be facing difficult economics after a divorce, and their husbands are well aware of that:
If a dude ever says "You have it good" the VIOLENT subtext is always because he knows that most single mothers in America are made to have it extremely bad outside of marriage because our public policy provides nothing close to welfare.— girl, divorce him (@girlziplocked) February 6, 2021
He brings it up as a threat.
Also this is blood-boiling:
The number of husbands described in these DMs who lied to their partners about doing online therapy to get out of childcare is not zero.— girl, divorce him (@girlziplocked) February 7, 2021
Apparently, this is a very common strategy.
The stories are worth reading because maybe you'll recognize something you're going through in your marriage—or something you're putting someone else through.